Saturday, June 22, 2024

Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries expresses concern over the declining fish population due to illegal fishing methods

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The Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries has expressed concern over the declining fish population due to illegal fishing methods in the Kafue Fishery.

Southern Province Fisheries and Livestock Coordinator, Kabwe Puta says the Government is working with various stakeholders to curb the vice and increase fish production in the water body.

“These water bodies in the province are threatened with a serious decline in fish populations due to the use of bad fishing methods. That is why the Ministry is not working in isolation but involving other stakeholders to control these bad vices,” Dr Puta said.

Dr Puta said this in Mazabuka, at a handover ceremony of a banana boat, an engine and 10 life jackets to Shimungalu Fisheries Management Committee, by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF).

Dr Puta said the boat would enable the Shimungalu Fisheries Committee to effectively manage the fishing activities of Kafue Fishery.

“We are grateful for this support from WWF as it is the fulfillment of one of the Presidential directives to the Ministry, of increasing fish production,” he said.

Dr Puta further said the boat had come at the right time when the fish ban was in place and there was need for water transport to monitor fishing activities in the Kafue Fishery.

And Mazabuka District Commissioner, Oliver Mulomba said the Kafue Fishery was a unifier as it attracted people from different parts of the country as they came to harvest fish from the water body.

Mr Mulomba said as people from different regions interacted, they promoted the “One Zambia, One Nation,” motto and this could only be sustained if fish stocks were preserved through recommended fishing methods.

“Government and even you as the community cannot do it alone. Everyone should continue playing their part so that we reduce on issues of overfishing, to preserve our stocks,” he said.

Meanwhile, World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Country Director , Nachilala Nkombo said the Kafue Fishery was one of the most productive fisheries as it produced on average about 3000 to 11,000 tonnes of fish per year.

Ms Nkombo further said a survey conducted by WWF revealed that the fishery had about 3250 boats and about 4000 fishermen living within its landscape.

In a speech read for her by WWF Mazabuka District Coordinator – Voices for Climate Just Climate Action (VCA), Diilwe Syamuntu, Ms Nkombo said there was no doubt the numbers had continued to increase.

“We have no doubt this number has continued to increase and the benefits are still being received, however, over the years the Kafue flats have come under threat as there is massive exploitation, massive illegal offtake and massive illegal harvesting of fish and this needs to be addressed by all stakeholders,” she said.

And Shimungalu Fisheries Committee Chairperson Issac Mwewa thanked WWF for honouring the request by the community to procure a boat for them.

3 COMMENTS

  1. Why do we respect the white man so much. During the colonial days there was no fish ban period . People that time obeyed all the fishing laws such as not catching undersized fishes, using the right fishing gear and not fishing in identified breeding areas. The fish kept on multiplying unlike today when nobody respects let alone recognize the fisheries officers.

  2. These fisheries Officers get bribes from fisher men for them to fish through the breeding season. Secondly there is no fish in the rivers to maintain the ecosystem,hence crocodiles coming out of rivers searching for food (Man ) because its not man going through had time’s alone even animals are finding it had to find a meal and would hide and wait for villagers to go and draw water from the rivers and then pounce on them .Mind you it has lockjaw teeth and would open up once it has drowned its prey under water. Fisher men could you please have aheart and leave some fish for this creature please.You are also making cost of leaving hard for these creatures as you have depleted the fish stock from the rivers including smaller ones.Have aheart you guys as Crocks also need to eat.

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